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Young People’s Chorus of New York City
A Murmuration for Chibok
November 4, 2016 @ 7:00 pm - November 6, 2016 @ 7:00 pm
These girls were abducted for the sole reason that their captors believe that girls have no right to an education. Above, a still from a video released by Boko Haram of the teenagers in captivity. More here.
A Murmuration for Chibok, composed by Joan La Barbara, with lyrics by Monique Truongwas, was commissioned by and for the Young People's Chorus of New York City for its Transient Glory series.
A “murmuration” is both the action of murmuring and a flock of starlings, in particular the flock’s graceful, net-like swooping. A Murmuration for Chibok is a raising of voices to honor and to keep in the vital present the over 250 school girls abducted in Chibok, Nigeria, by Boko Haram on April 14, 2014.
When & where
Friday November 4, 2016 @ 7pm
National Sawdust, 80 North Sixth Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Sunday, November 6, 2016 @ 7pm
Merkin Concert Hall, 129 West 67th Street
Tickets for November 4 are $35, available online or by calling (646)779-8455
Tickets for November 6 are $25 ($15 for students), available at the box office, online or by calling (212)510-3330
Joan La Barbara writes:
"As of March 2016, there are 219 girls still missing. We begin with ululations, evoking their chatter, laughter, inquisitiveness, and the joy of their beginnings. We call their names because each girl is an individual, beloved and missed. We connect as “sisters” because our song is not a “speaking for” but a joining with them in their lament and in their will to survive. The composition then engages microtonal fluctuations from a central, unifying tone in order to create acoustic "beats” and tensions. Focused overtones and reinforced harmonics add both a mysterious soaring as well as occasional bite to the sonic texture. Our song closes with a cascade—of voices, of water, of flight—with the final ringing crotales, each one a star in the night sky.
"On a personal note, I was shocked and horrified when I first learned of the kidnapping of the over 200 girls from their school in Chibok, Nigeria by Boko Haram, a radical group that does not approve of women receiving an education. It has been 2 1/2 year since the abduction and although a few have escaped and some have recently been released, most of these young women are still being held captive in unimaginable circumstances. News media were full of the story at first but over the years, the stories have been very sparse. I wanted very much to honor these young women, to celebrate their courage in trying to get an education and sing of their lives that were just beginning."
More about this
Also on the program are works by Mason Bates, Michael Gordon, Jessie Montgomery, Robert Xavier Rodriguez, and Charles Wuorinen.